Posted on: 22 June 2020Share
Rubber is a very generic term that covers many different materials. A custom rubber part may be made in many different ways, depending on what the part needs to do or endure. Rubber manufactures can work with you to develop a part specific to your needs, but working out the properties of the rubber and how it will act in your situation is critical.
Some rubber products start with natural rubber harvested from some trees and plants. The natural rubber is called latex, and it's a white milky substance that will stretch and retract to its original size. Natural rubber is a natural polymer of Isoprene that is sometimes considered an elastomer because of its ability to stretch and shink.
Latex, or natural rubber, is used to make custom rubber parts in some cases, but the latex properties have to be right for the part being made, or the natural rubber will need altering. Chemically altering the latex is possible to change the properties of the rubber. Still, in many cases, it is easier to create the rubber, especially if needed in large amounts.
Polymers and Man-made Rubber
Because there are so many different custom rubber parts needed for various uses, creating a chemical polymer is often a better solution to achieve the properties your part needs. If the rubber durometer (hardness) needs to be specific for deflection or stiffness, the rubber company can often make the compound for you.
The rubber company may already have a compound that meets your needs and would be perfect for the custom rubber parts you need, saving a lot of time in the creation of the materials needed. It is a good idea to use the material for a run of test parts to ensure that the rubber parts perform the way you need them before making them in high volume. Still, most companies manufacturing custom rubber parts can work with you to accomplish that.
Common Uses For Rubber
Many different custom rubber parts are part of the things you use every day, including tires, the feet on appliances, and isolators for your engine mounts or suspension system in your car. These rubbers all have different properties because they have different jobs. In each situation, the rubber company that created them had to mix and match polymers to get a perfect balance.
If you need a part that will stop vibration, it may be a harder rubber than that used for a tire, but the starting point is still a natural or chemical polymer that is altered to make the perfect rubber for the rubber parts it is used in.